KEARNEY, Nebraska — A team that was 74 seconds away from the end of its season is moving on in the USHL Clark Cup Playoffs.
Fargo, which won an overtime thriller to stay alive Saturday night, shut down Tri-City over the final 2-1/2 periods Sunday and defeated the Storm 3-2 to win their Western Conference best-of-three semifinals series 2-1.
Tri-City sandwiched goals around a goal by the Force's Tristan Broz, on an assist from one of Saturday night's heroes, Aaron Huglen, to lead 2-1 after one.
But the Force's Mason Salquist tied the game on the power play at 6:05 of the second on an assist from Matthew Crasa., and Fargo's Jeremy Davidson scored the game winner three minutes later on an assist from Bear Hughes.
Force goalie Brennan Boynton was solid, despite Fargo being outshot 38-22. Boynton stopped 36 shots.
The game was a turnaround from the first two. Fargo was 1-of-10 on its power play chances in the first two games while Tri-City connected on 4-of-5 power plays. The Force, facing elimination, was saved Saturday when Huglen tied the game at 18:46 of the third and Cody Monds won it just shy of three minutes into OT.
On Sunday, the Force scored on one of two changes and killed all four Tri-City man advantages.
The Force will play in the conference finals against Sioux City. Dates and times have not been released.